There’s little doubt that Magpul’s innovative designs have done more to promote the idea of “tactical chic” in the last couple decades than any other company. They were one of the first to actually put some effort into designing visually appealing firearms accessories instead of simply sticking to the pre-existing military designs that seemed stuck in the 1980s. While they may have initially made a name for themselves for their visual style (and helpful mag pulling accessories), what has kept them in the spotlight is their ability to innovate and produce useful designs that solve problems. One of their latest: the ACS-L carbine stock . . .
NcStar, at least in my mind, is best known for their line of VERY affordable scopes on OpticsPlanet. I’ve never had a real inclination to check out their gear as optics quality isn’t normally something I skimp on. But then Nick sent me this octagonal shaped scope to test out, and now that I’ve put my hands on on one, I have some formed opinions based on real world experience. I still wouldn’t buy one…
Good free-floated hand guards make for good gun experiences. Finding a good one can be a little tough, though, and there are certain things that can really irk you, as I pointed out in my Strike Industries review. Specifically, I look for a few things when reviewing a free-floated hand guard (FFHG). First, ease of installation. If a mechanically-minded guy with a vise, action block, and a torque wrench can’t do it, that’s a big downer. Second, it needs to mate to the receiver like it was born there. Third, it should be light weight. And last, it should provide a nearly seamless top rail for accessories. I found the ODIN Works KMod Forend fits the bill across the board . . .
Free floated Key-Mod handguards seem to be all the rage. A bunch of companies make them. I’ve had the pleasure to try out a few, and over the last few months I’ve started to form an opinion of them as a whole. Mostly, I like them. As a guy with small hands, I can certainly appreciate the slimmer profile provided by not having Picatinny rail sprouting from every surface, and I generally enjoy a lighter gun whenever possible. Strike Industries has a Key-Mod handguard that features a cut out for an A2 sight that claims to be lightweight, durable, and endlessly modular thanks to Key-Mod as part of their Mega Fins line of handguards. I got the opportunity to try it out, and I’m mostly a fan . . .
A good trigger can make all the difference in the world. A high end precision AR-15 rifle might be mechanically capable of shooting 1/4 MoA groups all day long, but if the shooter can’t properly interface with the firearm through the trigger then it all goes to hell pretty quickly. Hiperfire is a very new company from the land of MST3K and walleye that has started making triggers for the AR-15 platform that have a very interesting design — a design that might put them on the top of your shopping list.
The AR-15 is a dirty, dirty girl. The gas expansion system it uses to operate sprays hot carbon all over the internal parts of the gun every time it cycles, leaving a baked-on layer of gritty, nasty gunk that can clog up your rifle and make it stop working. It sucks, and the traditional method to keep your gun running sucks even more: regular and thorough maintenance. I mean, this is 2014, surely there’s a way I can throw money at the problem and make it go away, right? That’s where Cryptic Coatings comes in with their new bolt carrier groups . . .
Tommy Theis runs Arkansas-based Theis Holsters. He hand-makes every holster, mag holster, and belt that comes out of the shop, and test draws from each holster to ensure proper fitment. I really like single-clip, hybrid holsters, and thought I’d try one from Theis — their EZ-Clip — for my H&K P7 . . .
ShootingSight isn’t quite the brand name that Timney and Geissele are. As such, all of the positive reviews of its TAV-D TAVOR trigger pack — like mine from a couple weeks ago — are great, but there have still been quite a few questions about durability and reliability in adverse conditions. I figured I’d throw mine into the freezer for a couple days, then shoot it cold, shoot it soaked, and shoot it full of mud to see how it would hold up. Results above.
Gun storage is sometimes a real PITA, as it were. As the collection grows, you sometimes wonder, “Where am I supposed to put all this stuff?” And as a guy raised with the mantra of, “A place for everything, and everything in its place” putting pistols on a shelf in a haphazard fashion is no bueno. But then I found these Handgun Hangers from Gun Storage Solutions and now life is better and more organized . . .
A couple of years ago, I purchased one of those gun safes that claims to hold 30+ guns. After many months of trying to get my gun collection to fit, I’ve come to the conclusion that there are only two ways to get 30+ guns to fit into this safe: 1) lay it on its back and start piling the guns in, or 2) make sure all 30 guns are pistols. Suffice it to say, option two doesn’t work for me and option one ain’t gonna happen either. Instead, I’m left with a gun safe that looks like this . . .
I’m in the process of upgrading the sights on a few of my pistols so I figured I’d get a variety of sights and do a quick once over on all of them. In this round I have access to a set of Ameriglo (GL-115) sights, a set of Meprolight (ML-10224) sights and a set of TruGlo TFO (TG131GTIY) fiber optic sights; all are for standard GLOCK pistols (9mm, .40, etc) and are Tritium powered night sights. And if you’ aren’t familiar with the whole tritium thing . . .
As someone who spends way too much money at GLOCK Professional on training and credentials to make my ego wall look nice, I think it would be a good time to sit down and talk about some of the firearm repair tools that I have had a chance to use over the years. The GLOCK factory sight tool can be purchased from Midway, Brownells and any large retailer of GLOCK products. They’re pretty easy to find. There’s only one catch . . .